Douglas Anger
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Walking, Standing, and Sitting: a Meditation
Psalm 1
The counsel of the wicked, the way of sinners, and the seat of scoffers may be closer to home that we'd like. The Bible offers a safe haven.
Published August 21st, 2019
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Main Point Summary
Main Point Summary
God blesses those who choose to meditate on and live according to His words.
Psalms 1:1-6
Blessed is the man 1
God blesses those
who a walks not in b the counsel of the wicked,
who don't live according to the so-called wisdom of perverse people,
nor stands in c the way of sinners,
who don't stand in the places where such people find their temptations,
nor d sits in e the seat of f scoffers;
and who don't sit down to join in the their mocking and gossip
but his g delight is in the law 1 of the Lord ,
but rather they stand in amazed delight at the wonders of God's law
and on his h law he meditates day and night.
and consequently they can't stop thinking about God's words, learning and internalizing them.
He is like i a tree planted by j streams of water
To what can we compare these people? To trees deeply rooted in good soil, drawing their sustenance from nearby streams,
that yields its fruit in its season,
producing beautiful, bountiful fruit at the right time, and
and its k leaf does not wither.
not merely thriving in good times only to wither in the dry seasons.
l In all that he does, he prospers.
God causes these people to prosper in all that they do.
The wicked are not so,
By contrast , those whose lives are driven by wickedness do not enjoy such blessings.
but are like m chaff that the wind drives away.
Rather , they can be compared to chaff – worthless seed coverings and dead debris left over from threshing.
Therefore the wicked n will not stand in the judgment,
This is the reason, these perverse people won't even be able to stand up when they face God's judgment
nor sinners in o the congregation of the righteous;
nor will they be able to stand with the assembly of God's people:
for the Lord p knows q the way of the righteous,
because although God is with the righteous, watching over them as they go along,
but the way of the wicked will perish.
He will destroy the ways of sinners, bringing them to destruction.
A tree that is planted near streams of water does not depend on rain to live, but is secure through drought.
My prayer: Father, give me a renewed love for your words and let me stand in wonder and amazement at the wisdom and goodness You teach us in the Bible so that I too will be drawn irresistibly to meditate on it day and night.
Questions for Personal Reflection The psalmist first describes the blessed man in terms of where he doesn't go. Many people have pointed out the progression from walking to standing to finally sitting with the wicked as their ways take hold on the Christian. While that progression is certainly interesting, I'd like to focus more on the on the "where" of these three statements in order to apply verse 1 to my life. Where am I encountering the counsel of the wicked in my life? It's easy to be swayed by an "evil report" on the news instead of trusting in God's provision. It's easy to listen to the "everybody does it" standard of personal ethics so commonly espoused in secular settings. Where is the way of sinners in my life? How often do I find myself standing in places where standards are low and sin and temptation run wild. Schools and workplaces that once had standards are now dens of profanity and immodest dress. Where is the seat of scoffers in my life? Gossip burns through our homes, workplaces, and churches like an out of control wildfire.
Disclaimer: The opinions and conclusions expressed on this page are those of the author and may or may not accord with the positions of Biblearc or Bethlehem College & Seminary.